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Editorial policy

The British Journal of Ophthalmology adheres to the highest standards concerning its editorial policies on publication ethics, scientific misconduct, consent and peer review criteria. To view all BMJ Journal policies please refer to the BMJ Author Hub policies page.


Plan S compliance

The British Journal of Ophthalmology is a Plan S compliant Transformative Journal. Transformative Journals are one of the compliance routes offered by cOAlition S funders, such as Wellcome, WHO and UKRI. Find out more about Transformative Journals and Plan S compliance on our Author Hub.


Copyright and authors’ rights

Articles are published under an exclusive licence (or non-exclusive licence for UK Crown and US Federal Government employees) and authors retain copyright. Articles can also be published under a Creative Commons licence to facilitate reuse of the content; please refer to the The British Journal of Ophthalmology Copyright Author Licence Statement.

When publishing in British Journal of Ophthalmology, authors choose between three licence types – exclusive licence granted to BMJ, CC-BY-NC and CC-BY (Creative Commons open access licences require payment of an article processing charge).

As an author you may wish to post your article in an institutional or subject repository, or on a scientific social sharing network. You may also link your published article to your preprint (if applicable). What you can do with your article, without seeking permission, depends on the licence you have chosen and the version of your article. Please refer to the BMJ author self archiving and permissions policies page for more information.


Preprints

Preprints foster openness, accessibility and collaboration by allowing authors to make their findings immediately available to the research community and receive feedback on an article before it is submitted to a journal for formal publication.

BMJ fully supports and encourages the archiving of preprints in any recognised, not-for-profit server such as medRxiv. BMJ does not consider the posting of an article in a dedicated preprint repository to be prior publication.

Preprints are reports of work that have not been peer-reviewed; Preprints should therefore not be used to guide clinical practice, health-related behaviour or health policy. For more information, please refer to our Preprint policy page.


Article transfer service

BMJ is committed to ensuring that good quality research is published. Our article transfer service helps authors find the best journal for their research while providing an easy and smooth publication process. As part of this service, once authors agree to transfer their manuscript all versions, supplementary files and peer reviewer comments are automatically transferred, without the need to resubmit or reformat.

Authors who submit to the British Journal of Ophthalmology and whose work is rejected on the grounds of priority will be offered the option of transferring to BMJ Open Ophthalmology.

BMJ Open Ophthalmology is the open access companion journal to the British Journal of Ophthalmology. It is indexed by Web of Science Core Collection: Emerging Sources Citation Index; PubMed Central; DOAJ; Google Scholar; Scopus, and covers all aspects of ophthalmology and vision science. The journal publishes original articles considered by peer reviewers to be coherent and technically sound, ensuring that the latest research is disseminated rapidly to a global audience. Find out more about BMJ Open Ophthalmology.

Please note that the article transfer service does not guarantee acceptance but you should receive a quicker initial decision on your manuscript.

Contact the Product Owner of BMJ’s Article Transfer Service for more information or assistance.


Article processing charges

During submission, authors can choose to have their article published open access for 2,500 GBP (exclusive of VAT for UK and EU authors). Publishing open access has multiple benefits including wider reach, faster impact and increased citation and usage. Authors can also choose to publish their article in colour for the print edition – instead of the default option of black and white – for 400 GBP. There are no submission, page or online-only colour figure charges.

Find out if you are eligible for institutional funding

A number of institutions have open access agreements with BMJ which can either cover the whole cost of open access publishing for authors at participating institutions or can allow authors to receive a discount off the APC.

Visit BMJ’s open access agreements page to find out whether your institution is a member and what discounts you may be entitled to.
For more information on publishing open access with BMJ visit our Author Hub.

ORCID

British Journal of Ophthalmology mandates ORCID iDs for the submitting author at the time of article submission; co-authors and reviewers are strongly encouraged to also connect their ScholarOne accounts to ORCID. We strongly believe that the increased use and integration of ORCID iDs will be beneficial for the whole research community.

Please find more information about ORCID and BMJ’s policy on our Author Hub.

Data sharing

British Journal of Ophthalmology adheres to BMJ’s Tier 3 data policy. We strongly encourage that data generated by your research that supports your article be made available as soon as possible, wherever legally and ethically possible. All research articles must contain a Data Availability Statement. For more information and FAQs, please see BMJ’s full Data Sharing Policy page.


Rapid responses

A rapid response is a moderated but not peer reviewed online response to a published article in British Journal of Opthalmology; it will not receive a DOI and will not be indexed. Find out more about responses and how to submit a response.

Submission guidelines

Please review the below article type specifications including the required article lengths, illustrations, table limits and reference counts. The word count excludes the title page, abstract, tables, acknowledgements, contributions and references. Manuscripts should be as succinct as possible.

For further support when making your submission please refer to the resources available on the BMJ Author Hub. Here you will find information on writing and formatting your research through to the peer review process and promoting your paper. You may also wish to use the language editing and translation services provided by BMJ Author Services.

Editorial

A timely succinct commentary on any aspect of clinical or laboratory ophthalmology, usually in relation to the subject matter of a paper to be published in the same issue. All editorials are commissioned.

Word count: up to 1500
Tables/illustrations: up to 2 images/tables
References: up to 25 references

Original research

Original research can be submitted under Clinical science or Laboratory science and should include the following:

  • Title
  • Synopsis/Precis: a 35 word summary of the main findings or outcomes of the study for the ‘At a Glance’ article
  • Structured abstract: (250 words, headings: “Background/Aims”, “Methods”, “Results”, and “Conclusion”)
  • Introduction
  • Materials and methods
  • Results
  • Discussion

Clinical science: up to 3000 words, up to 5 images/tables,35 references
Laboratory Science: up to 3000 words, up to 5 images/, 35 references

Review

Reviews will address any aspect of clinical or laboratory ophthalmology. Most articles are commissioned but uninvited reviews are also welcome; prior discussion with the Editor is recommended.

Unstructured abstract: up to 250 words
Word count: up to 3000 words
Tables/illustrations: up to 5 images and tables
References: up to 100 references

Commentary

Commentaries provide an expert analysis of articles published by British Journal of Ophthalmology. Commentaries are commissioned only and readers seeking to respond to a published article should submit using the eLetters paper type.

Supplement

The BMJ Publishing Group journals are willing to consider publishing supplements to regular issues. Supplement proposals may be made at the request of:

  • The journal editor, an editorial board member or a learned society may wish to organise a meeting, sponsorship may be sought and the proceedings published as a supplement.
  • The journal editor, editorial board member or learned society may wish to commission a supplement on a particular theme or topic. Again, sponsorship may be sought.
  • The BMJPG itself may have proposals for supplements where sponsorship may be necessary.
  • A sponsoring organisation, often a pharmaceutical company or a charitable foundation, that wishes to arrange a meeting, the proceedings of which will be published as a supplement.

In all cases, it is vital that the journal’s integrity, independence and academic reputation is not compromised in any way.

For further information on criteria that must be fulfilled, download the supplements guidelines.

When contacting us regarding a potential supplement, please include as much of the information below as possible.

  • Journal in which you would like the supplement published
  • Title of supplement and/or meeting on which it is based
  • Date of meeting on which it is based
  • Proposed table of contents with provisional article titles and proposed authors
  • An indication of whether authors have agreed to participate
  • Sponsor information including any relevant deadlines
  • An indication of the expected length of each paper Guest Editor proposals if appropriate